Gold as ‘Trump insurance’

Yesterday’s solid blue candle on the gold chart [XAUUSD] confirms my view of the precious metal as a form of “Trump insurance”. After Trump and North Korea exchanged threats suggesting nuclear retaliation, gold gained 1.32%, breaking resistance at $1275/ounce. Follow-through above $1300 would signal a primary advance, with a target of $1400*.

Spot Gold

* Target calculation: 1300 + ( 1300 – 1200 ) = 1400

From the BBC:

US President Donald Trump says North Korea “will be met with fire and fury” if it threatens the US.

His comments came after a Washington Post report, citing US intelligence officials, said Pyongyang had produced a nuclear warhead small enough to fit inside its missiles.

This would mean the North is developing nuclear weapons capable of striking the US at a much faster rate than expected.

The UN recently approved further economic sanctions against the country.

The Security Council unanimously agreed to ban North Korean exports and limit investments, prompting fury from North Korea and a vow to make the “US pay a price”.

The heated rhetoric between the two leaders intensified after Pyongyang tested two intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) in July, claiming it now had the ability to hit the US.

Mr Trump told reporters on Tuesday: “North Korea best not make any more threats to the US. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.”

Gold responds to crude strength and Dollar support

The Dollar Index is testing primary support between 92 and 93. Breach of support would offer a long-term target between 83 and 84* — a bullish sign for gold.

Dollar Index

*Target: 93 – ( 103 – 93 ) = 83

Crude continues to test resistance at $50/barrel. Respect would indicate another test of the lower trend channel, around $40/barrel, continuing the primary down-trend. Follow-through above $50 would suggest that a bottom has formed and the next correction is likely to be higher than the last low at $42.

Nymex Light Crude

Gold retraced to test support at $1250/ounce — in line with crude strength and Dollar support. Respect of support is more likely and would indicate another test of $1300. Reversal below $1250 is unlikely but would warn of another test of primary support at $1200.

Spot Gold

Silver also retraced and is likely to test primary support at $15.50. Rising Twiggs Trend Index suggests that another test of resistance at $17 remains likely. Breakout above $17 would be bullish for gold.

Spot Silver

ASX banks spoil the iron ore party

I underestimated the strength of iron ore which has now broken resistance at 70, suggesting that a bottom is forming. Strength of the latest rally indicates that the next correction is likely to find support at 60.

Iron Ore

The Resources sector responded, with the ASX 300 Metals & Mining index headed for a test of its February high at 3200 after recovering above support at 3000.

ASX 300 Metals & Mining

Banks have been on the receiving end, however, with the ASX 300 Banks index testing short-term support at 8500. A Twiggs Money Flow peak below zero warns of strong selling pressure. Breach of 8500 would signal another test of primary support at 8000.

ASX 300 Banks

The ASX 200 continues to form a narrow line, consolidating between 5600 and 5800. Declining Twiggs Money Flow, with a peak below zero, warns of selling pressure. Breach of support at 5600 remains likely, despite the iron ore rally, and would signal a primary down-trend.

ASX 200

ASX stalls

Iron ore is testing resistance at 70. Respect would warn of another test of primary support at 53, while breakout would suggest that a bottom is forming and the next correction is likely to find support at 60.

Iron Ore

The Resources sector remains wary, with the ASX 300 Metals & Mining index retreating after a false break above resistance at 3050.

ASX 300 Metals & Mining

The ASX 300 Banks index retraced from resistance at 8800, heading for a test of the rising trendline and short-term support at 8500. Twiggs Money Flow continues to warn of selling pressure despite indications from APRA that they are unlikely to require further capital raising. Reversal below 8500 would warn of another test of primary support at 8000.

ASX 300 Banks

The ASX 200 has stalled, consolidating between 5600 and 5800 over the last two months. Declining Twiggs Money Flow, with a peak below zero, warns of selling pressure. Breach of support at 5600 is more likely, with an ensuing down-trend, but a lot depends on how iron ore behaves in the next few weeks.

ASX 200

It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.

~ Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)

Gold rallies as Crude rises and Dollar falls

The Dollar Index is testing primary support between 92 and 93; bullish for gold. Breach of support would offer a long-term target between 83 and 84*.

Dollar Index

*Target: 93 – ( 103 – 93 ) = 83

Crude rallied strongly this week, with Nymex light crude testing its upper trend channel at $50/barrel. Respect would indicate another test of the lower trend channel, around $40/barrel, continuing the primary down-trend. Follow-through above $50 would suggest that a bottom has formed and the next correction is unlikely to reach the last low of $42.

Nymex Light Crude

Gold followed through above $1260 after a brief retracement, indicating another test of $1300. Reversal below $1250 is unlikely but would be a bearish sign, warning of another test of primary support.

Spot Gold

The accompanying rally in Silver is testing the descending trendline at $17/ounce. Penetration would suggest that a bottom is forming and the primary down-trend is near an end; a bullish sign for gold.

Spot Silver

Opec and the oil barons face a slow death by electrification

From Ambrose Evans-Pritchard:

Tesla’s mass-market Model 3 will be launched this Friday at a starting price of $US35,000 ($43,725) and a battery range of 215 miles (346 kilometres) , with a target of 1 million sales annually within three years….

The argument at the big global banks has shifted from whether peak oil demand will occur to how soon it will occur. Goldman Sachs said this week that it could hit by 2024 in “an extreme case”. That is not extreme enough for Tony Seba from Stanford University and RethinkX.

…Professor Seba thinks EVs will reach cost parity within five years as prices fall below $US20,000 (versus $US24,000 for the average oil-based car today). Thereafter they will sweep the field on cost alone. With far fewer moving parts and a potential lifespan of half a million miles, they will render the combustion engine obsolete.

Source: Opec and the oil barons face a slow death by electrification

ASX 200: It’s down to iron ore

Iron ore encountered resistance at $70 per ton. Another test of primary support at $53 is likely. But a failed down-swing would be a bullish sign.

Iron Ore

The ASX 300 Metals & Mining displays a similar pattern, retreating below 3000 after testing 3050. A failed down-swing that ends above 2750 would be a bullish sign, while breach of support at 2750 would confirm the primary down-trend.

ASX 300 Metals & Mining

APRA eased pressure on the big four banks to raise more capital; the ASX 300 Banks index responding with a rally to 8800. Retracement that respects support at 8500 would be a bullish sign, signaling continuation of the up-trend. The industry is still light on capital but recent remarks by APRA chair Wayne Byres indicate that they are prepared to tolerate a more gradual adjustment rather than a new round of capital raising. Dividends may still come under pressure, however, in banks with high payout ratios.

ASX 300 Banks

ASX 200 consolidation between 5600 and 5800 continues. Declining Twiggs Money Flow flags selling pressure. Breakout from the consolidation will indicate future direction but this is likely to be dominated by mining (iron ore) and the banks. If both are pulling in the same direction, the index is likely to follow. Banks are increasingly bullish but the question-mark over iron ore remains.

ASX 200

Gold rallies as Dollar plunges

The Dollar Index is in a primary down-trend. Its decline accelerated in the last week, headed for the next level of primary support between 92 and 93, which is bullish for gold.

Dollar Index

Falling crude prices, however, have a bearish influence on gold. Nymex light crude recently staged a rally but ran into resistance at $47.50/barrel. Expect another decline to test the lower trend channel at $42, continuing the primary down-trend.

Nymex Light Crude

Gold broke resistance at $1250/ounce. Follow-through above $1260 would signal another test of resistance at $1300. Reversal below $1250, on the other hand, would be a bearish sign.

Spot Gold

Silver rallied off primary support at $15.50/ounce but only a break above the descending trendline (at $17/ounce) would flag a reversal in the primary down-trend.

Spot Silver

ASX buoyant as iron rallies

Iron ore broke resistance at $60 and is headed for a test of $70 per ton. This is a strong rally but it does not signal the end of the bear market. Only when the rally ends and there is another test of primary support at $53 will we be able to gauge long-term sentiment.

Iron Ore

The ASX 300 Metals & Mining index broke resistance at 3000, completing a double bottom reversal with a target of 3250. Breach of 2750 is unlikely at present but would signal a primary down-trend.

ASX 300 Metals & Mining

The ASX 300 Banks index is testing resistance at 8500 but Twiggs Money Flow below zero continues to warn of long-term selling pressure. Breach of 8000 remains likely and would confirm the primary down-trend.

ASX 300 Banks

The ASX 200 is consolidating in a small triangle (some would call this a large pennant) between 5600 and 5800. Breakout will signal future direction. A lot will depend on iron ore (China) and the banks, which seem to be pulling in opposite directions at present.

ASX 200

Gold: There’s life in the old girl yet

The Dollar Index is in a primary down-trend. Breach of support at 95.50 signals another decline. The long-term target is the 2016 low between 92 and 93.

Dollar Index

A weakening Dollar and geo-political uncertainty should fuel demand for gold, but gold and silver have both been testing support in recent weeks rather than advancing strongly as expected.

The best explanation I have for this is falling crude oil prices. The long-term chart below shows gold and crude oil prices adjusted for inflation (CPI). Whenever there is a strong surge in crude oil prices, gold tends to follow. Rising crude prices and higher consequent inflation reduce confidence in the Dollar and major oil producers tend to buy more gold with their newfound surplus, as a store of value.

Gold & Crude Oil prices adjusted for inflation

The opposite occurs if oil prices fall and those same oil producers are forced to sell gold reserves in order to fund an unexpected deficit.

At present crude prices are undergoing a bear market rally, having recovered above resistance at $45/barrel, but the primary trend is down. Gold has followed suit, recovering above support at $1215/ounce. Penetration of the declining trendline suggests a test of resistance at $1250.

Spot Gold

But crude prices remain weak and (gold) respect of $1250 would indicate another test of primary support at $1200.